Catawba County Cooperative Extension Service

Upcoming Workshops and Activities

Wheat nitrogen application - late January to early Feb is the good time to estimate your wheat tillers and optimize your nitrogen application.  If you have less than 50 tillers per square foot you can still rescue your wheat with a nitrogen application now to get more tillers.  

Take a look at this video on tiller counting for the details and call our office if you want assistance in estimating tillers in your wheat field.

Take a look at the soybean variety selection tool developed by Katherine Stowe, at the NC Soybean Producers Association.  

Search on the best performing varieties that meet your needs, for example you can specify a group 4 variety with the Liberty Link trait and good resistance to frog eye leaf spot and shattering. 

    Catawba County  Turf and Weed Management

Killians Hardware Spring Pro Day 
February 20th, 2020 from 8:30 a.m. -1:30 p.m. 3790 Springs Rd NE, Hickory

Earn pesticide credits, meet with reps, and enjoy lunch. 

**This is a free event. No registration needed.**   

 4 (L) NC landscape contractor credits

4 (D, L, N, X) NC pesticide credits

8:30-9:30am-  Title: Turf Weed Management
Presenter: Adam Smith, PhD 

9:30-10:30am-  Title: This is Sports Turf Jeopardy! Best management practices and pesticide safety and handling for turf
Presenter: Matt Lenhardt, MAEE

10:30-11:30am-  Title: Management of Phytophthora root and crown rot on ornamentals in the landscape
Presenter: Michelle Henson, BS, Inga Meadows, MS

11:30-12:15pm- Lunch

12:15-1:15pm-  Title: The Latest and Greatest in Turfgrass Pathology
Presenter: Lee Butler, MS


2020 Hands-On Gardener Program
This year the Advanced Gardener Program (inside presentations) will be moving outside for hands-on learning activities.

You can become a certified Hands-On Gardener!

Small Fruit Planting - Hands-On - Feb 11, 1 to 3 PM

Blueberry Pruning Workshop - Feb 26, 1 to 3:30 PM

Blueberry Pruning Practice - Hands-On - Feb 28, 10 AM to noon

Blueberry Pruning Practice - Hands-On - March 3, 10 AM to noon

Speaking of hands-on . . . our Master Gardener Course is a hands-on, learn-by-doing experience!
Wednesdays from 9 AM to noon
6 weeks in Mid March - April (food crops and pests)
6 weeks in Mid Aug - Sept (trees, turf, ornamentals)
Seats are limited to 20 people and filling fast!

Beginner Bee School

Catawba County Extension Center
1175 S. Brady Ave.
Newton, NC

Classes start Monday Feb 3rd at 7 PM
Classes continue on Feb 10, 17, 24, Mar 2, and 9

Cost $50 per individual or $75 per couple

Payment at first class includes text book (one book for couples) and first year membership into the NC Beekeepers Association

Register by calling Natalie at 828-465-8240
For more info call Gary at 828-234-6935

You must register in order to get a text book!

Hi c kory Winter Farmers Market
Saturdays inside The Hickory Soup Kitchen
110 2nd St. Place SE
Saturdays Only
10am - 2pm
Nov. 2 to April 11, 2020 
Vegetables, Fruit, MeatEggs, Tea, Coffee, Honey, Bread, Baked Goods                                                    and Crafts

Catawba County Local foods Guide
Time to update for 2020

Please let us know if you would like your farm or food business to be in the Local Food Guide.

 Requirements are that you produce, sell or utilize local foods sourced from within 50 miles of Catawba County.

The Guide will be printed in February and is also available in a mobile friendly version. See link above.

The listing is free, we just need a questionaire to be filled out and a picture or logo. Please contact April Vigardt at for more information.
WarmSeason Annuals Novel Fescue   
Catawba Valley Cattlemen's Association Meeting 
(2nd Tuesday of every month EXCEPT January )

February  meeting: Newton Extension Office
1170 South Brady Ave. Newton, NC

Educational Program: Selling Meat On-Line
using the new NC Choices website
Speaker: Mr. Lee Menius
Meeting Agenda:  Supper 6pm
Business Meeting: 6:45
Educational Program: 7:00
End: 8:00pm

Check this out: Shelby Area Beef  Conference
Cleveland County Center  
130 S. Post Rd. Suit 1, Shelby, NC. on
3:30 pm Meeting registration and
3:45 Welcome
7:00 pm Supper is served.

North Carolina State Cattlemen's Annual Conference 
Feb. 28-29;  Located near Hickory.  Website:
Bring Youth Saturday Morning!
Educational Meeting Strip Grazing Holcomb blend Beef Expo 2018
Small Fruit Plant Sale 
Orders Due February 28
Proceeds Benefit 4-H

Cooperative Extension is now accepting orders for the annual Small Fruit Plant Sale. The following plants are available for order:

* Strawberries 
* Blueberries
* Blackberries
* Raspberries
* Asparagus
* Muscadine Grapes - New for 2020!
* Bluebird Houses - available year-round, too!

You may place your order online and then mail a check to confirm order at You may also request a paper order form that we can email or mail to you, and then you can return the completed form with payment. To request an order form, e-mail or call the Extension Office at 828-465-8240.  

Plants will be available for pick-up mid-March. 

New 4-H Clubs

Check-out some of these 4-H club options and make plans to get involved in 2020!

* New Jr. Entrepreneur Club 
  Ages 7 and older
The group will have 5 programs at the Extension Office where youth will learn some business basics and then participants will have the opportunity to set-up their own summer business at the Conover Farmers Market. The first meeting is planned for Wednesday, February 26, followed by Tuesdays, March 12 and 26 and April 9 and 23 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. On Saturday, May 2, youth will shadow market vendors at the Hickory Farmers Market. There is no charge for youth to participate in the 4-H Club, but they are expected to complete a 4-H Entrepreneurship Project that will be due in the Fall, which will reinforce the importance of record keeping with business ownership. Youth under 12 must be accompanied by a parent. Club Leaders: Helen and Kurt Durrant and Michelle Long. For information or to enroll in the club, email

* NEW Hickory 4-H Club - Ages 5-10
Meets monthly on a Friday evening at St. Luke's Methodist Church, Hickory
Next Meeting: February 7 at 6:00 p.m.  This will be a general interest with fun and different hands-on programs each month. Great group for exploring 4-H for families new to 4-H. Club Leader: Jessica Stamey.

* Top Shots Shooting Sports Club - Ages 9 and older
Kick-off Informational Meeting for 2020 is planned for February 26 at 5:30 p.m. at the Catawba Valley Rifle and Pistol Club in Conover. Organizational Leader: Becky Brittain with a team of shooting sports coaches.

For more information about these and other 4-H clubs, contact Donna Mull, 4-H Agent at 828-465-8240 or


  Agritunity 2020
Free Educational Conference and Tradeshow
for Small and Beginning Farmers
Save the Date

Satuday, February 8th, 2020

Iredell Agriculture Center
444 Bristol Dr., Statesville, NC 28677

Join us as Dr. Jessica Urzen, Catawba Valley Medical Center Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Physician, explains how what we eat can prevent or cause disease and shares tips on how to eat for better health.

The event is FREE. 
Registration is not required.

Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St. NE
Hickory, NC 28601

 6:00pm - 7:30pm

 Family Consumer Science (FCS) - 
Food and Nutrition

"Farm to Fork" Recipe Page

Visit the " Farm to Fork"  recipe page for recipes and resources to help you prepare produce that you grow or purchase at local farmers markets.

Attention - Aspiring Food Business Entrepreneurs:  

Click on the link below for answers to questions regarding starting a food business. Whether you are interested in selling value-added products at a farmers market or starting a 
food truck. You will find information to help you, including agencies that regulate food businesses.

Need help with food preservation?

Stop by the Extension office and pick up a complimentary guide with instructions on how to can and freeze selected fruits and vegetables. For your convenience,  the guides have been distributed to several local libraries but supplies are limited.

You can also visit the National Center for Home Food Preservation  website for extensive information on how to preserve your favorite foods. 
    Help Us Improve Our Customer Service To You!

Please answer these 4 simple questions by clicking on this survey link

In 2 minutes you will help us to improve how we serve Catawba County.  
This survey is completely anonymous

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination statement

North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equaopportunity regardless of racecolor, religion, creed, national origin, sexage, disability, or veteran'status. In additionthe two Universities welcome all person without regard to sexual orientation.  North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating.
Persons with disabilities and persons with limited English proficiency may request accommodations to participate by contacting Catawba County Extension Director, George Place, at (828) 465-8240 or or in person at the County Extension Office at least 14 days prior to the event.

Las universidades NC State y NC A & T están comprometidas colectivamente a llevar a cabo acciones positivas para asegurar la igualdad de oportunidades y prohibir la discriminación y el acoso independientemente de la raza, el color de la piel, el país de
origen, la religión, la ideología política, el estado civil y situación familiar, el sexo, la edad, la condición de veterano de guerra, la identidad sexual, la orientación sexual, la información genética o la discapacidad de la persona. Colaboración entre las
Universidades NC State y NC A & T, el Departamento de Agricultura de los Estados Unidos, y los gobiernos locales. 
Las personas con discapacidades y las personas con dominio limitado del inglés pueden solicitar adaptaciones para participar comunicándose con el Director de Extensión del Condado de Catawba, George Place, al (828) 465-8240 o o personalmente en la Oficina de Extensión del Condado al menos 14 días antes al evento.

Yog hais tias koj  xav tau kev txhais lus Hmoob, thov hu rau peb tus extension thawj coj, George Place, ua ntej nws thiaj li yuav nrhiav tau kev pab koj.  Nws tus xov tooj yog 828-465-8240.  Ua tsaug.
Dr. George Place
Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director
Agricultural Resources Center, Newton, NC 28658